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Tyler Perry thinks AI can create movies almost as well as he can and is worried about Hollywood's future

Tyler Perry
Tyler Perry is so stunned by the capabilities of AI that he's halted his planned studio expansion.Getty
  • The potential of AI convinced Tyler Perry to halt an $800 million expansion of his studios.

  • Perry made the decision after seeing OpenAI's tool Sora, which can create complex video scenes.

  • Perry warned that AI could threaten many jobs in the film industry.

The boom in generative AI is giving one of Hollywood's most seasoned producers pause.

Tyler Perry, the billionaire entertainer best known for his "Madea" franchise, had grand ambitions to expand his namesake production studios in Atlanta.

The $800 million project would have added 12 sound stages, backlots, sets, and more to the 330-acre property, which already ranks as one of the largest production facilities in the country.

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But the speed and sophistication of new AI technology, like OpenAI's new video tool Sora, convinced Perry to reconsider the expansion.

"I was in the middle of, and have been planning for the last four years, about an $800 million expansion at the studio," Perry told The Hollywood Reporter. "All of that is currently and indefinitely on hold because of Sora and what I'm seeing."

OpenAI launched Sora to a limited group of creators, as well as experts working to improve AI safety, earlier this month. The tool can generate videos up to a minute long from text and image prompts. It can also extend existing videos by filling in missing frames. Sora's videos aren't just simple clips. They can be "complex scenes with multiple characters, specific types of motion, and accurate details," OpenAI said.

Perry said he had heard about Sora but didn't know what to expect. "I had no idea until I saw recently the demonstrations of what it's able to do. It's shocking to me," he said.

He called the capabilities of AI "mind-blowing" and would likely reduce the need for studios to build big sets or travel to locations for shoots.

As a businessman, Perry knows that outsourcing jobs to technology will drastically improve his bottom line. He said he can now make a pilot show that would have cost millions for a fraction of the cost. As a Hollywood veteran, though, he said he also recognizes that the advancements in AI threaten jobs — from actors to editors to sound and transportation technicians.

"This is a time for galvanizing one voice in motion to help save, protect the individuals of our industry," he said, calling for Hollywood workers to organize under a single union.

Perry's plans to build a sprawling entertainment complex that will vie against Disney and Universal Studios is, however, still in the works. The 37 acres of property adjoining his Atlanta studios will include restaurants, shops, a theater, and a theme park-style experience, according to Forbes.

Read the original article on Business Insider